US Army – Army Uniforms

Following entry is a record in the “Catalogue of Catastrophe” – a list of failed and troubled projects from around the world.


US Army – USA
Project type : Design and deploy new uniforms
Project name : Universal Camouflage Pattern (UCP)
Date : Jun 2012 Cost :$5B

Synopsis :
After several years of use the US Army elects to ditch its Universal Camouflage Pattern uniforms because they make troops easier to see rather than less easy to see. Designed to be a standard uniform that would provide camouflage in a wide range of terrains, soldiers who used the uniforms reported that the gray-green pixilated design stood out almost everywhere it was worn. Industry experts called the $5B project a “fiasco”. Reports indicate that key design decisions were made by senior military leadership rather than those who had the depth of expertise. Unsubstantiated reports in the press indicate that some key decisions were overly influenced by a desire to have uniforms that were more “cool” than the US Marines.

Contributing factors as reported in the press:
Politics and poor decisions making. Recommendations of Subject Matter Experts overridden by Senior Management due to politics and poor judgment.

Reference links :

  1. $5B Camo SNAFU
  2. How U.S. Army spent $5BILLION on ‘failed’ pixel camouflage
  3. Video showing new Uniform when it was first introduced
  4. Universal Camouflage Pattern – Wikipedia page